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Old 8th April 2005, 19:34   #1
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Default What happened there? help please...

Iím so unnerved today that I now feel riding a 50cc moped safely is better than killing myself on a thrilling bike. Yesterday night, I took my honda unicorn for a spin just for the heck of it. Nice wide roads and a bike that had just completed 1100 km on the odo seduced me out of my senses, and I drove like crazy. I was like 105 kmph, and suddenly the tarmac surface narrowed.

I braked hard, and tried to swerve right (gradually of course) and to my total horror, I just couldnít turn - ever so slightly! Still at say 70 or 80 kmph, and barreling off the tarmac, I very narrowly missed a light pole and a parked bike before I could come down to a controllable speed on gravel. At that speed, it was sheer fortuity that there wasnít anything else that would have meant a very bad crash and certain death.

Now let me come to whatís relevant to you guys Ė I have a couple of questions in retrospect.

One, do two-wheelers also drag to one side under very hard braking? (Iíd like to believe that it was the bike that pulled to the left rather than accept that I lost control due to lack of skill)

Two, does hard braking affect steering, or is it always the same at whatever speed the bike does?

Three, I remember having read in Overdrive that when braking, one has to grip the tank firmly with the knees to avoid transferring weight onto the handlebar. Surely, that was not the first thing that came to my mind in the emergency last night. So could that lapse have been responsible for the unresponsive steering?

I need the answers to these, lest I lose confidence in my own ability to drive (maybe thatíd be safer)Ö well, Iím shaken loose.
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Old 9th April 2005, 02:26   #2
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dude just read that.glad you are alright man
take it easy and drive safe dude.


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Old 9th April 2005, 02:56   #3
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good to hear ur okay.take it easy
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Old 9th April 2005, 03:15   #4
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firstly ..thank god you managed to stabilize in time .

most people can't separate out the physics from the physical...

in an emergency braking situation even at low speeds (..say 60k's) it is quite easy to lock even the front brake, thereby possibly losing control while increasing the required stopping distance through sliding/skidding. ..now there are a number of factors that will contribute to a rider being able to exert more pressure on the brakes before wheel locking takes place, and increased weight by having a passenger on board is one of them.

the increased weight would not only apply more pressure on the tyre against the road surface... but may also increase the tire's contact patch as it will be squashed a little more with the increase in weight. ....the increase in weight will however also have negative effects on the bike's handling in such a panic stricken stop....

....the increase in weight will also mean that more weight is transferred on the front suspension which, under severe conditions might result in the forks bottoming out, which i guess (theoretically ) will have an effect on the steering and handling if an evasive maneuver is required ...

frankly as a kid i was bike freak but i soon realised i my temperment is not that of a rider (had very close calls ,which kept me awake for nights )

bikes are not something to toy around in and experiment ...we are dealing with a very narrow margin of error here ...
so be safe bro...

cheers

Last edited by turbo_lover : 9th April 2005 at 03:33. Reason: spell errors, (bad hangover)
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Old 9th April 2005, 12:37   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skandyhere
One, do two-wheelers also drag to one side under very hard braking? (Iíd like to believe that it was the bike that pulled to the left rather than accept that I lost control due to lack of skill)
Well that depends on a lot of factors like tyre condition and tyre pressure, but were you using both brakes together? The front does a majority of the braking on a 2 wheeler, but you need to apply both simultaneously.

Quote:
Originally Posted by skandyhere
Two, does hard braking affect steering, or is it always the same at whatever speed the bike does?
If the bike would handle similarly at all speeds, all of us would be doing 100+ on our two-wheelers as a matter of course. However, any speed over 90 without a clear view ahead (you were riding at night, you said) on our 100-150cc two wheelers is an invitation to disaster. These are not performance bikes by any stretch of imagination and you should ride well within the limits. If you want to test top speed, do it in broad day light on a sparesely populated road.

Quote:
Originally Posted by skandyhere
Three, I remember having read in Overdrive that when braking, one has to grip the tank firmly with the knees to avoid transferring weight onto the handlebar. Surely, that was not the first thing that came to my mind in the emergency last night. So could that lapse have been responsible for the unresponsive steering?
Hmmm I dont know if you have to try and do that - it happens automatically to me whenever I am scared s***less. The first instinct is to hang on to the bike and your knees involuntarily clutch the fuel tank - in fright, if nothing else.

Quote:
Originally Posted by skandyhere
I need the answers to these, lest I lose confidence in my own ability to drive (maybe thatíd be safer)Ö well, Iím shaken loose.
Experience is the best teacher. Learn from this experience and you'll be a better rider. Try not to speed at night, since you never know whats beyond the range of your single headlamp.

Ride safe!
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Old 23rd April 2005, 21:34   #6
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hey skandy,
had a similar experience a couple of years back and i did the exact same thing you did. I then went over a few sites looking for riding tips. I realised that what i did was wrong and possibly so will you. I am not good at explaining stuff so i suggest you look up 'counter-steering' on the net.

safe riding.
alap.
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Old 24th April 2005, 20:27   #7
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I had a close call when some idiot stopped his scooter at the beginning of a flyover to take a U-turn!!!! I swerved from side to side, the rear end waggling wildly. I managed to keep it upright. I wanted to shout bad words at the culprit, but I refrained, preferring to plaster him with a pitiful interpretation of a smouldering glare!!
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Old 24th April 2005, 23:40   #8
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if you end up footing your rear brake extremely..then there is a possibility of the bike sliding to one side....if you tend to use the front brake and the rear...i think it should give you a better result..i mean..i have tried this on my cbz..around speeds of 80-100..try appling the brakes in the ratio of front ::rear as 65::35..you ll have good grip(in the case you have a disc in the front)..and if the rear tyre is wide enough then you wont have any problem..

Last edited by freakr : 24th April 2005 at 23:44.
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Old 25th April 2005, 00:26   #9
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In my experience any vehicle that is braking hard does not WANT to turn at all.

This is true more in case of cars than Bikes. A car breaking hard will absolutely refuse to turn. On the other hand a Bike will turn but very reluctuntaly. And its not safe either, to brake n turn at the same time.

Your other problem could have been, this phenomenon. I dont remember the name right now. But what it basically says is that, when you are about to crash or you are tryin to avoid somehting, there is a general tendency to keep looking at the object you are tryin to avoid. This ENSURES that you do crash into the said object. It is of prime importance that you look at the position that you WANT yourself to be in rather than the position you DONT want to be in.

Countersteering, as someone mentioned earlier, is a useful method to avoid such incidents. It means that when you are tryin to more left hard you should steer right (thats correct opposite side) ever so slightly and then heave with all your effort to the left. This is not the exact defenition of countersteering but this is what you might have to do when you find yourself in a pickle. In theory countersteering is something similar to opposite lock in cars (like all of them rally cars). you basically turn the handle bar in the opposite direction that you want the bike to turn in.
What I would suggest is.. instead of tryin to purposely try and achieve this.. watch yourself a lot closer when you turn at high speeds. All of us subcouciously do it. Not possible to corner properly without some countersteering. So watch youself closely and try to make youself better at it rather than trying it from theory.

I hope I helped

Ram
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Old 25th April 2005, 07:59   #10
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Yeah now that you mention it I do remember doing some spectacular countersteering on my scooter when its very wet, the grip on offer from the puny tyres being very insufficient!!
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Old 25th April 2005, 10:13   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freakr
if you end up footing your rear brake extremely..then there is a possibility of the bike sliding to one side....if you tend to use the front brake and the rear...i think it should give you a better result..i mean..i have tried this on my cbz..around speeds of 80-100..try appling the brakes in the ratio of front ::rear as 65::35..you ll have good grip(in the case you have a disc in the front)..and if the rear tyre is wide enough then you wont have any problem..
Well, i think that's PRECISELY what i'd done there. this means that at least i'm not totally wrong in the braking department...

and thanks guys - the countersteering stuff is interesting. have to try it sometime.

one more thing. what do u guys think about ripping at 80-110 kmph on a bike with only 1000-1500 km on the odo? engine damage? would it blunt its performance before a period of around 5 years?

Last edited by skandyhere : 25th April 2005 at 10:19.
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Old 20th November 2005, 23:19   #12
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I was riding my Pulsar home last month, when I was trying to overtake a M800. I was doing about 50ish while the car was doing around 40. Suddenly a senior woman appeared about 30 feet ahead, directly in front of the 800. She was trying to cross the road. The car honked loudly, to tell the lady to back off, but instead she darted ahead, now directly in my path...
WTF?? To say that I panicked would be an understatement. With all my might I jammed both the brakes, and the rear swerved out of line. I was also tilted at a dangerous angle. Many things passed through my mind (if I dont fall down and die myself, the crowd will certainly beat me to death and I am going to meet The Maker on my Birthday etc etc..). Then I lifted off the rear break a wee bit, and the bike swerved to the opposite side.
But that must be my lucky day, since I missed the lady by a whisker, and also managed to stay upright somehow. I was quite shaken and stopped some distance ahead.The rear Zappers had left a big 'S' mark on the road and several people were glaring at me.
Is there a definite method for panic braking? Countersteer is worth a try, but when in a pickle, it will be difficult to implement if he/she has not had practice of the same. Any other suggestions ?
This incident happened on Sinhgad Road, one of the worst roads in Pune.
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Old 20th November 2005, 23:42   #13
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hey sajo
glad to know your okay man.these pedestrians i tell you...

emergency braking is worse on a bike because as you brake you also have to concentrate on balance.i know its not as easy to do as it is to say but you have to make sure you never lock your brakes.once you do that your really asking for trouble.so you havta brake as hard as you can without locking and if by chance it gets locked realease a little.if your wheels get locked and the friction between your tyres and the road isnt sufficient you will skid and increase your braking distance and you might even fall.


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Old 22nd November 2005, 23:55   #14
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dear Skandyhere,

the first thing to note is that u have no Control in an Emergency Situation and ur Riding Skills are EXTREMELY POOR.

Simple rules below for riding at high Speed (can be taken for any speed u feel FAST be it 20 or 200kmph).

You should never follow closer than 2 seconds
You should be able to respond to anything within 4 seconds from you
You should be searching 12 seconds ahead at all times

In your case Night riding if u dont have Owl eyes increase the scan distance ahead to 20 seconds.

One more thing buddy,
Do some hardcore brake testing before u hit high speedson the TREACHEROUS highways.
On OPEN GROUND
Make some Marking point say 100mtrs from ground zero - accelerate to a speed u are capable to handle and at the marked point use brakes Front 65 to 70% Rear 40 to 50% (try avoiding rear wheel lock and tilting body weight when braking) and come to a complete stop. Check the distance it took u to come to a complete Stop!!!! Go back ground zero and try ur skills at SAME speed to halt the bike faster in lesser distance. Once u achieve getting lesser distance then u r on the right track. gradually increase Speed and reduce stopping distance. in a weeks time it will be rule of thumb and u will be a Safer rider and not a Liability to ur self or to someone else.

cheers if u need more tips just PM me.
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Old 23rd November 2005, 22:10   #15
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Well my dear friend no matter what type of vehicle it is 2 or a 4 wheeler the simple funda is to brake and **** 1 gear down before you wanna take a turn or whateva thing you are planning to do.....

This is a simple rule do try it out it works always for me atleast.
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